Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Psalm 100

1 Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.

2 Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise:  be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

5 For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

Wishing you all a very happy Thanksgiving.  We have so much to praise the Lord about.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Learning the Hard Way

There have been a few lessons I’ve had to learn the hard way over the years.  Such as:

  • Don’t drop off your best baby doll to the neighbor boy who is pretending to play barber shop.  (I carried Susie around by a tuft of remaining hair for the rest of her days.)
  • Always, check the rear view mirror, even when backing down your own driveway.  (Because someone might be backing up your driveway at the same time.)
  • Buckle your seatbelt every single time you get in a car. (Because the one time you don’t,  you might leave an imprint of your face on the windshield.)
  • Do not attempt to iron your skirt while you are wearing it. (Now I know that one sounds so completely obvious, but I was late for class.  I had a book on my lap under the skirt, it just wasn’t large enough.)

And just within the past three months:

  • Always, always, ALWAYS use a stick to check a steel trap.  (That’s actually a lesson I remembered a fraction of a second too late.)
  • Sometimes skunks and groundhogs share the same burrow. (Woo, boy!  Not a pleasant discovery.)
  • If a surgeon tells you he’s going to take out some pieces of hardware from your face, make sure he counts them and shows them to you before you leave.  (Or you might be surprised to see some appear in a dental x-ray the next time you need a filling.)
  • And sometimes, you just can’t prepare yourself for what’s to come.  (At least not in this life.  Thank goodness we can know how to make sure Heaven will be our eternal home—“These things have I written that ye may know that you have eternal life…” I John 5:13)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


I know there are things that happen here on earth that, hard as we try, we just cannot understand.  This morning, as I was lying in my bed, reflecting on the time spent with a friend yesterday, I was praying.  Wrestling with this very topic.  She is facing cancer yet again.  This beautiful soul, desperate to reflect the love of Jesus, keeps running into this formidable enemy.

My mind and heart were grappling with understanding all over again.  Why does God allow suffering in those individuals who live steadfastly for Him?  And maybe a more accurate question would be ‘Why doesn’t He provide them with miraculous healing?  A sign of His favor?”

Outside of faith, I cannot even begin to make sense of any of it.  And yet, as I allow my faith to seep into my questioning, I am reminded that we have more grace than we deserve in simply being His children.   I remember that God does allow things, but that He doesn’t necessarily cause them.  We have sorrow and disease and death because we live in a world cursed by sin.  And so, in the midst of these afflictions, God chooses to manifest his grace, but not necessarily healing.  Humanly speaking, it seems unfair.  But it helps perhaps to view it as being chosen to endure a hardship because He knows that person will bring Him glory in spite of the pain.  I can only grasp at the fringes of how that works.

And as I lay there, praying and thinking, my radio came on to wake me with music.  Songs of praise, songs of blessing.  Then the announcer shared this quote:

When before the throne we stand in Him complete, all the riddles that puzzle us here will fall into place and we shall know in fulfillment what we now believe in faith—that all things work together for good in His eternal purpose. No longer will we cry “My God, why?” Instead, “alas” will become “Alleluia,” all questions marks will be straightened into exclamation points, sorrow will change to singing, and pain will be lost in praise. –                                                                    --Vance Havner

I’ve got lots of question marks that need straightening out into exclamation points.  I’m sure you do as well.  So even as I pray for my friend-- for wisdom, for peace, for comfort, for relief—I choose to believe that even this will be used for God’s glory.   And for today, I’m thankful for the promise that one day, we will understand.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

A Promise Kept

Last Monday, on what would have been our nineteenth wedding anniversary, I stood with our children looking down at the Grand Canyon.  Keeping a promise that you and I had made them a couple of years before –that we would make our next family adventure a visit to the Grand Canyon.  I missed you and wished you could have been here to laugh at the boys’ comments.  If you could ask Ethan, he would tell you that “It’s just a really big ditch, Dad.”

I lingered at the edge longer than they wanted.  It was warm, and they were ready for ice cream.  I could have stayed all day and watched the sun set.

Already on this westward journey, I had navigated across seven states (if you count ours- which I did since we live in the northeastern quadrant of it.)  I had driven to the top of Pike’s Peak and back down—all without overheating the engine or the brakes, thank you very much.   While we were at the top, we decided to try the famous high-altitude doughnuts.  Out of habit, I ordered five.  I didn’t even realize I had done it until Megan asked me whom the extra one was for.  None of us could bring ourselves to eat it. 

I wish you could have been with us to see all the tumbleweeds in Utah and Arizona.  The kids thought they were so amusing, rolling across the road ahead of us and getting all tangled up in the fence so that it looked as though someone had lined them up like wispy round hay bales.  Sometimes one would roll under the car in front of us (when there was another car, that is) and explode into bits as it hit the undercarriage.

I wish you could have been there at the Lincoln Log Cabin in Illinois when just as Henry had finished teasing Megan for wigging out as a cicada buzzed by her, one landed on his shoulder and he ran around screaming his head off.  We all laughed for what seemed like twenty minutes after that. 

We saw so many beautiful places,  and I think the kids will remember this adventure for many years to come.  I know you would be proud of us, proud of me.  And though you couldn’t be with us in person, you were there in our hearts.  We sure do miss you.

Friday, February 11, 2011

The Song I’m Singing

I’m cleaning today. 

I know.  It’s terribly exciting, isn’t it?

Anyway, I just haven’t had any idea what to write in this blog for awhile now.  But today while I was cleaning, a song popped into my head.  It’s called Because He Lives. I thought it was worth sharing.

The chorus goes like this:

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.
Because He lives, all fear is gone.
Because I know He holds the future,
My live is worth the living just because He lives!

One thing is clear, there is much uncertainty in this life.  Our own family tragedy has been followed by watching several friends suffer disappointments.  It is enough to make one to wonder if the journey is worth it. 

Personally, I wonder sometimes how I’ll ever manage to bring up these three beautiful children on my own.  But I am thankful for the gentle reassurance from the Holy Spirit that I am not alone.  Sometimes it comes as a Scripture verse to my mind (Heb. 13:5b).  Sometimes as encouraging words from a friend, and sometimes in the form of a song.

And so today I’m singing.

Monday, January 3, 2011

A New Year, A New Normal

Jeff’s service was beautiful and uplifting.  I think it was everything he wanted it to be, and I’m thankful for the conversations we had to plan it, as hard as that was at the time.

The kids are holding up marvelously and started back to school today.  The guidance counselor at each school contacted me today to assure me that they are looking out for their well-being and will be available for whatever needs might arise.  It is good to know.  I want my kids to feel like they have a safe place to go if they start feeling overwhelmed during the day.  I wish I could protect them from that, but I know that isn’t realistic.  And probably not healthy, either.

While they were at school, my parents came over and helped me put away all the Christmas decorations.  I usually feel wistful about putting Christmas away, but it felt good today.  I need to take back my house.  *chuckle*  It’s a bit of a mess.

I have been accumulating paperwork, too.  And that will be addressed tomorrow.  Lots of forms to fill out, accounts to notify, health insurance applications to complete.  I’ve put that off long enough.  But I know I’ll feel better once that is all taken care of.

Then I can get back to just being a mom.  Planning meals.  Doing laundry.  Packing lunches.  Making the library run.  Dusting. 


Maybe I can put the dusting off a little longer. 


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

With Hope

Jeff entered into the arms of Jesus yesterday at 2:20 pm.  We will miss him terribly, but rejoice in knowing he is whole and no longer in any pain.  And we have the blessed hope that we will be reunited with him again one day in Heaven because he knew Jesus as his Savior.